The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, on Tuesday said the electoral umpire would collaborate with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission to prevent vote-buying in the June 18 governorship election in Ekiti State.
Yakubu, who condemned monetised elections, assured voters in the state of making efforts to check the trend; adding that INEC is neutral, hence “the choice of who becomes the next governor of Ekiti State is entirely in the hands of the people.”
The INEC chairman, while speaking in Ado Ekiti during a meeting with traditional rulers in the state, lauded the traditional institution but charged it to continue to appeal for peace in their communities and the state to ensure peaceful and violent-free election.
He said, “We (INEC) are going to take steps with the EFCC and ICPC to ensure that this sad trend of using money to bribe voters does not mar the forthcoming Ekiti election as we have seen in the elections conducted by political parties.”
Yakubu said a total of 989,202 voters had been registered in Ekiti State by INEC, out of which over 740,000 representing about 74 per cent had collected their Permanent Voter Cards as at Friday in readiness for the election.
He said the Bimodal Voters Authentication System invention to be deployed for the election was tested with 100 per cent success for accreditation of voters in Ekiti State on Monday “in line with the new law which stipulates that we must use technology to identify or authenticate voters.”